GSoC/GCI Archive
Google Summer of Code 2012


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Tux4Kids is a volunteer project dedicated to creating fun and educational software for children. The project was started by Sam Hart over ten years ago and currently maintains and develops three software programs. The programs take their name from Tux, the Linux mascot. Tux Paint, led by Bill Kendrick, is an award-winning and widely used artistic graphics program. Tux Paint is enjoyable for everyone from the youngest children capable of using computers up through adults. Tux Math (originally written by Bill Kendrick, now led by David Bruce and Tim Holy) is a video game-style math drill program. It covers basic math operations up through topics such as negative numbers, factoring, and order-of-operations exercises. Tux Typing (originally written by Sam Hart, now led by David Bruce) offers word typing practice in the setting of two video game-type activities, as well as phrase and sentence typing for older students. All three programs are SDL-based C apps, licensed under the GPL. They are developed natively on Linux and are included in all major desktop distributions, as well as non-Linux Free Software collections such as the FreeBSD Ports Collection and the MacPorts project for OS-X. Builds are also available for Microsoft Windows and Haiku/BeOS. The aim is to avoid specific platform dependencies so the programs can be made available as widely as possible, including the computing environments that children are most likely to actually encounter in schools. Similarly, all three programs are extensively internationalized using the standard GNU gettext library. Starting this year, we are interested in expanding beyond the traditional desktop application model into web-based and mobile learning games. Potential approaches include javascript/html5 for cross-platform mobile development, and Java language programming for applets, installed applications, and (with some modification) Android devices.


  • Proposal for a new cross-platform educational application This proposal aims to create a new FOSS educational app for the Tux4Kids family, using the same source for all major desktop and mobile platforms/OS. The application will support learning many subjects through a modular problem generation system, and can serve as the base for new all-platform applications. A unified code-base optimizes development time and lowers the contribution barrier, by removing the need to sync updates between ports or maintain separate bug-fix for different ports.
  • Tux4math games for Android and iOS I want to design a game that can be played by children on mobile devices which can be used for educational and entertainment purposes at the same time and currently no store (iTunes or Android) has such an application. Such an app will accelerate learning for people who do not have adequate learning tools or who cannot afford quality education.